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RCA cans commercial release of Clay Aiken's "Invisible" CD single

By Wade Paulsen, 12/18/2003 

Once again, RCA has changed its mind with regard to release of Clay Aiken's CD single "Invisible" -- and the latest change isn't good news for American Idol 2 runner-up Clay's devoted fans.

This week, RCA canceled the planned commercial release of "Invisible" ... only about a month after it announced the release. The planned B-side of "Invisible," a cover of the Neil Sedaka with 10cc 1970s hit "Solitaire," which seems to be perfectly suited for Clay and was produced by Cliff Magness, will be held for use as the B-side of Clay's NEXT single, due as a commercial release in early 2004.

As a result, the only consumers who will own the "Invisible" CD single are those who acquired the promotional single (perhaps during the frantic bidding on eBay).

"Invisible," which entered the Billboard airplay charts at #57, has failed to rise above #43 -- its position for the last three weeks -- in six weeks on the chart. The lack of an airplay "spark" around the song (despite Clay's enormous album sales) may have inspired RCA to save the commercial single (and the "Solitaire" B-side) for Clay's next song.

Meanwhile, although Clay's friend (and American Idol 2 winner) Ruben Studdard had the #1 album for the week ended December 14 with his long-delayed Soulful, Clay's double-platinum album Measure of a Man continues to rack up significant sales. The album, which has always ranked in the Top 15 on the Nielsen SoundScan U.S. Album Sales chart since its release nine weeks ago, sold around 157,000 copies last week to hold on to the #11 slot for the second straight week.

Clay's album also rose to #15 on the Nielsen SoundScan Canadian Album Sales chart, dwarfing Ruben's debut at #37 -- and his platinum single "Bridge Over Troubled Water" is still #8 in the Nielsen SoundScan U.S. Singles Sales chart in its 28th week.

Oh, and Clay was also named the "Best-Mannered Person of 2003" by the National League of Junior Cotillions, according to the Associated Press. Clay was chosen "for his example of humility and politeness," according to the League's statement, and also "because of the courteous manner in which he treats fellow performers and fans," according to the group's executive director. He beat out runner-up Oprah Winfrey for the honor.

Perhaps Leo "The Lip" Durocher was wrong after all.

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